As a horse owner, the recent story in The Olympian about the rescue of 39 horses from squalid conditions at a Graham area ranch sickened me.
The idea that anyone would allow animals to live in such conditions – described by Pierce County officials as horses living in stalls with up to a foot of urine-soaked manure to stand in – is unbelievable. The horse owner’s attorney commented that “there were alternatives to confiscating the animals; including asking the owner to clean his barn.”
If this horse owner has to be told to “clean his barn,” then he clearly has no idea of how to take care of horses.
In addition, a veterinarian, Dr. David Best, who according to The Olympian has worked for this horse owner for 15 years, said he had never seen signs of abuse or neglect at the ranch. The photo in the 9/27/12 Olympian story clearly shows a horse with feet that are extremely overgrown and in need of attention.
You don’t have to starve a horse to abuse and neglect it. I do not understand how a licensed veterinarian could miss such obvious signs of neglect.